Hark! The Herald Angels Sing

“Hark! The Herald Angels Sing” is one of the most beloved Christmas hymns of all time. It was written by Charles Wesley in 1739 while the music was composed by Felix Mendelssohn in 1840. Let’s look at a few stanzas of this beautiful carol.

Hark! The herald angels sing,
”Glory to the newborn King;
Peace on earth, and mercy mild,
God and sinners reconciled!”

“God and sinners reconciled” through Christ. This is the true meaning of Christmas and, even more, the true meaning of Christianity. Jesus Christ was sent “through the tender mercy of our God to give light to those who sit in darkness and the shadow of death.” (Luke 1:78-79) We’re reconciled with God because Christ has “made peace through the blood of His cross.” (Colossians 1:20)

Joyful, all ye nations rise,
Join the triumph of the skies;
With angelic host proclaim,
“Christ is born in Bethlehem!”

“Where was the Christ was to be born?” Herod asked the chief priests and scribes. “In Bethlehem of Judea,” they answered.

Bethlehem. This little, insignificant town would be the last place we would have chosen for God to enter the world. But, just as the Lord chose a place unworthy to host Him He chooses to save us, who are unworthy of such an honor. (Luke 1:52; 1 Corinthians 1:27)

Our righteousness, our good standing before God, comes not from what we have done, but from what Christ has done on our behalf. (1 Peter 2:24)

Christ, by highest Heaven adored;
Christ the everlasting Lord;
Late in time, behold Him come,
Offspring of a virgin’s womb.
Veiled in flesh the Godhead see;
Hail incarnate Deity,
Pleased with us in flesh to dwell,
Jesus our Emmanuel.

The miracle of Christmas isn’t that a little baby was born in a manager, or that a star appeared, or that angels filled the sky.

The miracle of Christmas is the incarnation of Christ Jesus, “who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. (Philippians 2:5-8)

Christ, in some mysterious way, laid aside His divine rights, clothed Himself in humanity, dwelt among us, and served His creation by going to the cross…this is the miracle of Christmas.

Such sacrifice and love is beyond human comprehension and it causes us join the angels in praise of the King of kings.

”Glory to the newborn King;
Peace on earth, and mercy mild,
God and sinners reconciled!

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